Soils & Nutrient Management (ER)

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AFNR CAREER FIELDS: Plant Systems
2012
SOILS AND NUTRIENT MANAGEMENT
Objective: Explain the relationship between soils, soil nutrient variability, and crop yield.
Activities:
1. Explore career opportunities and identify skills of job descriptions listed on DNR, NRCS,
local co-ops, and agronomy business websites relating to plants, soils, and fertility.
2. Using fertilizer recommendation from Progressive Ag Center- interpret soil analysis
measuring nutrients, pH, and CEC; discuss their benefits to crop yield.
3. Discuss the following question: Why are soil nutrients variable? Understand the
relationships between nutrient movement/transport and soil texture, depth, slope, erosion,
permeablility, surface runoff, land class, land treatements (tillage), and/or AWHC.
4. Determine land classes in the field; evaluating all of the criteria of the Minnesota Land
Judging Score Card. Evaluate soil profiles in all land classes in local farms.
5. Review job description of grid sampling for soil nutrient tests; identifying field
equipment design, components, skills practiced, and ways to exceed expectation.
6. Take cores for soil tests in a variety of soil moistures and textures- observing core depth
and quality (using probe from local co-op).
7. Apply for spring/fall soil testing internships with local co-ops/agronomy businesses.
8. Implement Soils, Soils Testing, and Nutrient Management into FFA CDEs, SAE
activities, or fundraisers (spring/fall grid sampling).
Sources:
1. Progressive Ag Center (GrowMor Technology)
2. Advanced Crop Management (see attached equipment photos)
3. Minnesota Land Judging Manual/Score Card
4. Farmers Coop Elevator
5. Cropstar Consulting fertilizer recommendation (attached)
6. Ag Leader Technology
7. Minnesota DNR
8. USDA- NRCS
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